Italian Online Gambling Generates €1.026BN in 2016

Italian Online Gambling Generates €1.026BN in 2016In 2016, Italy generated €1.026 billion in online gambling revenues, elevating it to the continent’s second largest market behind the UK, and ahead of France (3rd) and Spain (4th). Furthermore, Italy’s iGaming market increased by a full 25% compared to the previous year, with the government subsequently collecting €247 million by way of gambling taxes, higher by more than 20% compared to 2015.
According to the results released by the Politecnico di Milano, casino games dominated the industry with a 43% share of the market worth €439 million in 2016, followed by sports betting with €350 million in revenues, up by 31% versus the previous year. In addition, 23% of all gambling activities in 2016 took place via mobile phones, with sports betting accounting for 56% of wagers, and online casinos a further 29%.
In the meantime, online poker continues to languish, with revenues falling by 10% to €133 million. That figure is a far cry from 2012, when iPoker accounted for almost half the online gambling activity taking place in Italy. Mostly impacting Italy’s poker market in 2016 was a 7% fall in active players and a 15% decline in stakes for the cash game segment, compared to a stakes fall of just 1.5% for tournaments, and 2% fewer players. Going forward, the country’s iPoker market is expected to see some positive movement, though, if the shared liquidity compact ever gets off the ground between Italy and a number of other EU regulated countries, such as France, Spain and Portugal.
Finally, the remaining €97+ million in revenues was derived from a range of online gambling products, which includes bingo, lotteries, scratch cards, virtual betting, exchange betting and horseracing. This category also posted a 20% gain versus 2015.
Looking ahead to 2017, the 84 Italian online gambling licenses already issued in the country is expected to rise above 200 licenses this year, with the 120 or so new bids expected to raise around €24 million. Commenting on the expansion, Samuele Fraternali from Online Gaming Observatory, stated:
“This call for bids should redefine the sector’s competitive balance. Furthermore, these professionals will have to adhere to the new privacy law in order to protect the bettors even more.”

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